Bringing Minimalism and Sustainability to the Big Day

The Maples Woodland

Being a conscious consumer applies to weddings, too. Make sure Mother Nature gets an invite with these sustainability tips from the pros.

USE WHAT YOU HAVE—“There are so many ways to have a sustainable wedding,” says Jessica Shurtleff of JOYEUX Events. “We encourage our couples to take house plants they already have in their homes and use them as décor for the wedding. We’ve collected beach wood, leaves and branches that have fallen or trimmings from their backyard for centerpieces and placed them in recycled glass beverage bottles. Some couples have even been generous enough to give us leftover flower arrangements to dry and use as confetti for the next couple’s wedding!”

SET THE SCENE—Jennifer Tan of Tan Weddings and Events says that the most successful weddings are the ones where the setting “supports the celebration—whether it be a private elopement or an exquisite production. In this regard, we’re always thrilled to incorporate the indigenous bounty of nature. We call it ‘anikothesi’—two Greek words meaning ‘belong’ and ‘place.’ We encourage couples to forage for twigs, berries and wildflowers at woodland venues, or simply highlight an ivy-covered stone wall as the backdrop of a ceremony instead of masking it with drapery, arches and a profusion of florals.”

WASTE NOT, WANT NOT—“I’m seeing more couples forego a paper invitation and use an online invitation system like Paperless Post combined with a wedding website,” says Shurtleff. “It’s very user-friendly and reduces a lot of waste.” As for favors that won’t clog up the landfill, Christina Nichols of Parker Nichols Events & Design says that edible favors are a frequent request. “Macarons in custom packaging are my go-to!” With these helpful hints, Mother Nature will surely be in attendance.

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